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Will cafés ever be the same again?

Café culture could be doomed in Australia

The old stereotype of Aussies throwing ‘shrimp’ on the barbie has been replaced by our reputation as the makers and consumers of some seriously good coffee. But has COVID-19 destroyed the Australian café industry? 



Aussies love a good cuppa, so much so that 70% of Australians see their local café as the centre of the community, ahead of other amenities including the post office, research has found.


A report commissioned by Australian coffee roaster Harris Coffee found that 70% of Australian café -goers and small business owners are worried that our cafés will never be the same again.


“Between the bushfires and COVID-19, cafés across Australia have been hit hard in recent months, Harris Coffee head David Ansell said.  


“Through our Harris Café Report, we found that 80% of small business owners in hospitality believe they won’t recover from recent hardships without support.”


“43% also said they won’t be able to stay open longer than six months without the support.”


To do its bit “to get cafés back on their feet“, the Australian coffee roaster has unveiled a first-of-its-kind initiative to help keep Aussie café culture alive and support businesses on the road to recovery.


The Harris Café Recovery Project is a new scheme for Australian café owners nationwide, allowing them to apply for a share in $1 million worth of support that will assist them in rebuilding, as they return to serving their local communities.


Up to 25 café owners will be eligible to receive a share of the $1 million worth of support.


Harris is encouraging Aussies to support their local café by buying a coffee, and if your local is doing it tough, encourage them to apply for the Harris Café Recovery Project.


For more information and application terms and conditions, visit

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Written by: Gaya Avery
Published: 22 July 2020

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